Australian Critics of Scientology
This page maintained by David Gerard.

Vancouver Pickets

Martin Hunt, 13 Mar 1999

[Note: Two picket leaflets after the demo report.]
From: (Martin Hunt)
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Vancouver Pickets
Date: 13 Mar 1999 23:39:48 -0800
Message-ID: <>

Vancouver org picketed Friday and Saturday March 12 & 13 by Gerry
Armstong and myself. Highlights:

* Scientology executive ordered another cult member to "shoot Gerry"
  should he dare step over their property line.
* Next day, another Scientologist invites us in the org to talk; a
  group waited inside. I demanded that they put the offer in writing,
  as it smelled of a set-up of some kind - call us in, then charge us
  with trespassing.
* Later, a Scientologist told us that we were trespassing, even though
  we were on a public sidewalk, and scrupulously avoided their property
* One passerby said that the Scientology site had been hacked and said
  to check out, but I've yet to see the hack on the site
  or any mention of this?
* Passersby took many leaflets; close to 100 were handed out in total.
* One guy talked with Gerry, went into the org, took the personality
  test, had the evaluation, and came out, said that being told that
  we were into "bestiality" was enough to turn him off. Apparently,
  the staff had told him, as a means of dead agenting us, that Gerry
  was charged with "bestiality" (sex with animals) in the US!

After the second day of pickets, we noticed a college just 50 feet
from the Vancouver Scientology org; when we went inside to check it
out, I came across a sidewalk sandwichboard which mentioned a
"communication course" as one of the offerings; this set off alarm
bells for me, but when I talked to the receptionist who noticed us
wandering about inside, she was very critical of Scientology, and
commended us on picketing them. I gave her a flier to read over;
hopefully she'll pass on what she knows to any students in this
college, which turns out to be a small ESL establishment.

I went on to visit the Simon Fraser University downtown campus, the
huge new Vancouver Library and a bookstore to leave leaflets in
certain books by one sci-fi/pulp  (*not* SF) writer.

The pickets went very well; Gerry and I argued for a couple hours.
Gerry's position was that money is the root of all evil, and my
argument was that overpopulation is what's going to do us in, along
with consequent environmental destruction. We couldn't find any
middle ground, so there's little hope that the ars critics will
ever learn to "just get along". :-)

Now back to your regularly scheduled flames.


My picket flyer, printed on 17" paper, double-sided, folded four

                      What is Scientology?

  "In addition to violating and abusing its own members' civil rights,
  the organization over the years with its "fair game" doctrine has
  harassed and abused those persons not in the church whom it perceives
  as enemies." - Judge Breckenridge, Los Angeles Superior Court.

Scientology is a cult created by an American author, Lafayette Ronald
Hubbard, in the early 1950s. His most well-publicized book is Dianetics,
a muddle of pseudoscience and bombast that claims to be able to create
supermen. After the failure of Dianetics to achieve any kind of scientific
credibility, Hubbard went on to start a new pseudoscience, dubbed
Scientology, which survives today in the form of the "church" of

Scientology is a bizarre mix of science-fiction and psychotherapy which
raises the wild claims of Dianetics to a new height. The core of
Scientology's beliefs lie in the Operating Thetan level three
materials, which is a treasured - and expensive - goal of the cult's
quack "auditing" psychological therapy. OT III, as it is abbreviated
to, consists of removing souls of murdered space aliens ("body thetans")
from the mark's body implanted there 95,000,000 years ago by an evil
galactic prince named Xenu. It is a good money-maker for the cult, as
it costs over $100,000 US dollars to complete the level, and there are
more beyond it up to the exalted state of "Operating Thetan level 8",
all involving the removal of space aliens infesting the body.

Scientology's beliefs are harmless enough, and they're welcome to believe
in them. But Scientology's beliefs are not the real issue with this cult.
What has made Scientology so infamous in the media and on the internet
is their policy, as set down in precise Hubbard Communications Office
Policy Letters by Hubbard himself. This policy instructs Scientologists
to mercilessly attack anyone who would dare to criticize the cult, and
to use the law to sue and harass anyone brave enough to do so. True to
this policy, the cult engages in thousands of lawsuits, the majority of
them frivolous.

But Scientology's policy does not stop at barratrous lawsuits against
perceived enemies. Further policy declares that people who speak out
about Scientology or oppose it in any way are to be declared "Fair
Game," and may be not merely harassed, but destroyed by cult members
without consequences from Scientology, and with its full knowledge
and protection:

  "A truly Suppressive Person or group has no rights of any kind and
  actions taken against them are not punishable." - L. Ron Hubbard in
  HCOPL 1 March 1965 _HCO Ethics, Suppressive Acts, Suppression of
  Scientology and Scientologists, The Fair Game Law_

  "An enemy...may be injured by any means or tricked, sued or lied to
  or destroyed." - L. Ron Hubbard in HCOPL 18 Oct 1967.

Scientology claims that they cancelled the notorious Fair Game law, but
in fact it is still in force today, and was cancelled in name only,
just for public relations purposes:

  "FAIR GAME may not appear on any Ethics Order. It causes bad public
  relations. This P/L does not cancel any policy on the treatment or
  handling of an SP." - HCOPL 21 Oct. 1968: "Cancellation of Fair Game."

The way Scientology carries out this policy to destroy its critics is
multifaceted. Internet critics can expect to have private investigators
going through their trash and revealing their secrets; their banks may
be contacted; their families may be harassed; they may be placed under
surveillance; their place of work may be contacted in an effort to get
them fired; libel (called "Dead Agenting" in the cult's lingo) may be
spread about them in an effort to discredit or humiliate them, and they
may expect a wide range of similar attacks depending on how much
Scientology management, in the person of David Miscavige, Hubbard's
protege and the current cult leader, dislikes them.

Unfortunately, Scientology's attacks go beyond these crude attempts to
strong-arm its critics into silence. There are cases where Scientology
has locked up people it deemed a threat to itself. In at least one
case, this isolation, used in an effort to contain a public relations
flap, resulted in a death - Lisa McPherson, as reported in the print
media and discussed on various television shows. Scientology has also
presented itself as no friend to free speech, taking on Time Magazine
itself with a multi-million dollar lawsuit over a cover story entitled
The Cult of Greed and Power. Scientology is well-known in the mainstream
media for its libel chill tactics, but it has gone further than lawsuits,
with outright attacks on journalists, investigation into their private
lives, digging up dirt on them, and more. Scientology has also taken
this war against its own history onto the internet, where it has shut
down numerous webpages, cancelled posts, sued writers, and launched
massive Usenet spam attacks in an effort to silence its critics who
speak out about Scientology's current abuses or talk about the kind
of man L. Ron Hubbard really was on the Usenet newsgroup

The critics have a very strong case to present against Scientology based
on FBI reports, various government commissions, court documents, numerous
books and articles discussing the cult and its activities, as well as
Scientology management's own words. Scientology answers this mountain
of information by labelling its critics "religious bigots" and other
derogatory names such as "suppressive persons" and "degraded beings."
Of course, this goes far beyond the question of "religious bigotry."
Scientology has committed crimes - crimes for which many Scientologists
have been sent to jail, including the cult founder's wife and many top
executives. Indeed, the cult founder himself was a wanted man in the
last years of his life, and the current cult management has shown no
sign of improving matters, as a recent criminal indictment in Clearwater,
Florida over the suspicious death of Lisa McPherson proves. Scientology's
critics tend to come from diverse areas of society and number in their
ranks Christians, Jews, atheists, ex-Scientologists, skeptics,
sociologists, free speech advocates, civil libertarians, and many others
- most of whom have nothing to say against religion or belief, but are
alarmed at Scientology's repressive and criminal actions.

Of all of these diverse groups, one of the most interesting to listen
to are the former members of the cult. Scientology dismisses these as
failures and apostates, but the facts are, as always, more complex. People
have left Scientology more often than they have joined the movement, and
for a variety of reasons. Life inside the cult is restrictive and harsh,
with long hours, little pay, heavy punishments, little time for sleep or
recreation, limited access to family, and the application of the
notorious policy of "disconnection," in which family ties are severed
by the cult in order to keep a tighter hold over its members. Disconnection
results in parents being cut off from children, siblings from each other,
and friends being separated. This policy is vigorously applied when one
side of the relationship loses affection for Scientology by learning a
little about the organization or its leaders.

For those interested in learning more about Scientology, numerous resources
are available. For those with the patience for Usenet news, the newsgroup
alt.religion.scientology is populated with critics, ex-members, and
current members - this last group religiously exploiting their talents
at applying Fair Game and Dead Agenting policy in an effort to silence
all opposing voices. The newsgroup is currently being attacked with spam
and forgeries of what people have written in an attempt to shut them up
and stop them telling the truth. A visit to the library may reveal a
selection of good reading about Scientology, unless a member of the
cult has been ordered to remove or destroy the books. Look for any book
about Scientology not authored by L. Ron Hubbard or the occasional
Scientology-hired author for the critical viewpoint. Reading Hubbard
himself is also often quite revealing for insight into this man's
deranged thinking patterns, greed, and paranoia. Good critical analyses

  * Bare-Faced Messiah, by Russell Miller
  * A Piece of Blue Sky, by Jon Atack
  * The Road to Total Freedom, by Roy Wallis
  * Inside Scientology, by Robert Kaufman
  * Religion Inc, by Stewart Lamont
  * The Scandal of Scientology, by Paulette Cooper
  * The Mindbenders, by Cyril Vosper

A visit to the media archives of the library will prove rewarding, as
Scientology has received the attention of thousands of articles since
its inception, and currently enjoys several new articles per day,
globally. For people in the often heartbreaking position of having a
family member, friend or loved-one in the cult, another class of books
is also recommended. The best in this regard are:

  * Combatting Cult Mind Control, by Steve Hassan
  * Cults in Our Midst, by Margaret Singer.

Further information may be found on the world wide web. A few good
webpages to visit include:

Finally, if you have any more questions about Scientology or you would
like to learn more, you can send email to:, or
write to: Martin Hunt, 203-1116 Queens Ave., Victoria, BC, V8T-1M9
phone: (250-380-2025).

  "Scientology is a ruthless, destructive, and vindictive organization."
  - James Randi.


Gerry's flyer:

                   SCIENTOLOGY PICKET

This weekend, as Scientologists celebrate the birthday of cult
founder L. Ron Hubbard, critics of the cult's abusive and fraudulent
practices will be picketing Scientology organizations around the

In a landmark 1984 decision against Hubbard and Scientology, Los
Angeles Superior Court Judge Paul G. Breckenridge, Jr. stated:

  "In addition to violating and abusing its own members civil
  rights, the organization over the years with its "Fair Game"
  doctrine has harassed and abused those persons not in the
  Church whom it perceives as enemies.  The organization clearly
  is schizophrenic and paranoid, and this bizarre combination
  seems to be a reflection of its founder [L. Ron Hubbard]. The
  evidence portrays a man who has been virtually a pathological
  liar when it comes to his history, background and achievements.
  The writings and documents in evidence additionally reflect his
  egoism, greed, avarice, lust for power, and vindictiveness and
  aggressiveness against persons perceived by him to be disloyal
  or hostile."
  (Scientology v. Gerald Armstrong, Case No. C 420153)

This decision was affirmed by the California Court of Appeal
in 1991. (Scientology v. Armstrong, 232 Cal.App. 3d 1060, 283
Cal.Rptr. 917)

Hubbard spelled out his Fair Game philosophy for treatment of
his organization's "enemies."

  "ENEMY - ... Fair game. May be deprived of property or injured
  by any means by any Scientologist...may be tricked, sued, or
  lied to or destroyed." (Hubbard Scientology Policy Letter
  October 18, 1967)

People of good will around the world are picketing Scientology
to protest its Fair Game doctrine, its false promises, its
fraudulent practices, and its financial, psychological, physical
and civil rights abuses.

We call on Scientologists of good will to demand that their
leaders tell the truth about L. Ron Hubbard, tell the truth about
attacks on people with legitimate criticisms of organization
abuses, and tell the truth about Fair Game. If Scientology's
leaders will not tell the truth about these matters, we call
on Scientologists to refuse their leadership.

We call on Scientology's leaders to communicate openly and
civilly about Fair Game, about fraud and about organization
abuses, so that these unwholesome and dangerous practices can
be peacefully ended forever.


Picket signs were the same as last year; can be seen at:

Gerry took the pictures this year; I'll web them at the URL
above when he gets them developed.

Happy birthday, Ron, you dead bastard!

Cogito, ergo sum.

"Scientology is a ruthless, destructive, and vindictive organization."
- James Randi

[Hints and Tips for demonstrating against Scientology]